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Arconic on Monday said that it is wiling to select two Elliott directors to its board as the US metals and components group seeks to avoid a proxy fight with the activist investor.
Arconic said if Elliott’s nominees are confirmed by Wednesday, and willing to be interviewed by the board, it would “promptly” appoint the two it finds to be most “additive” to the board and nominate them for election at the annual meeting.
“If two Elliott nominees are appointed to the board, there will be eight independent directors who have joined the board within the past 15 months, with five of the eight nominated by Elliott”, the company said. Elliott is however seeking to replace four directors on the board.
The olive branch comes as Arconic and its largest shareholder, Elliott, have been locked in a battle over the direction of the company. Just last week Arconic announced the abrupt exit of its chief executive Klaus Kleinfeld noting his “poor judgment” after he sent Elliott founder Paul Singer an unauthorised letter that alluded to Mr Singer’s time at the 2006 World Cup. Mr Kleinfeld has since also stepped down from Morgan Stanley and Hewlett Packard Enterprise’s boards.
Elliott had been calling for Mr Kleinfeld’s exit since earlier this year and said the conduct exhibited a pattern at the company and doubled down on its calls for a management shake-up.
Arconic also said it was pushing its annual shareholder meeting, that was slated for May 16, to a date toward the end of May. Shares in the company were little changed at pixel time.